Ford Authority

Some EV Chargers Suffer From Major Reliability Issues: Study

While a recent study found that new vehicle shoppers continue to warm up to EVs, some concerns still remain, including whether or not they’ll have the ability to easily find a charging station that functions properly. Ford CEO Jim Farley is well aware that current EV charging standards are a bit lacking, to say the least, even as the automaker continues to expand its network and charging solutions. That’s part of the reason why a number of specially-equipped Ford Mustang Mach-E models are already out patrolling EV chargers and identifying units that aren’t functioning properly via the automaker’s Charge Angels program. Regardless, a new study from the University of California, Berkeley has found that some EV chargers still suffer from major reliability issues.

The study – Reliability of Open Public Electric Vehicle Direct Current Fast Chargers – utilized a Mustang Mach-E and evaluated 657 EVSE (electric vehicle service equipment) CCS connectors on 181 open, public DCFC (direct current fast chargers) charging stations in the Greater Bay Area recently, and what it found were a myriad number of problems. Each EVSE was determined to be “functional” if it was able to charge an EV for two minutes or if it was charging an EV at the time that particular station was evaluated, and yet, only 72.5 percent of the units observed were able to do this.

Of the remaining units, 22.7 percent were non-functioning, unresponsive, or had some other sort of problem including a non-working screen, charge initiation failure, payment system failure, network failure, or a broken connector. An additional 4.9 percent had cables that weren’t long enough to reach an EV’s charge port, too. Additionally, those that conducted the study waited around eight days and then rechecked 10 percent of the non-functioning EV chargers, at which point it was discovered that nothing had been repaired yet.

While EV charging service providers generally claim a 95-98 percent uptime rate, this study suggests that in reality, we aren’t quite at that point just yet, and it also proves that additional third-party testing is necessary to improve the situation moving forward.

We’ll have more on the state of the current EV charging network soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for 24/7 Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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  1. Ford Owner

    The maintenence fault is at stand alone stations with no employees. Just change them to walk in shops so EV owners can buy drinks and snacks, then add a rest area to wait while charging.

    1. Tigger

      Most people do not have time to waste like that when they are refilling/recharging their vehicles.

  2. Jim Glass

    Wow! Perhaps Ford would better off by marketing a good charger from a third party, eg JuiceBox or ChargePoint and stick to seller no cars. Sure there is less profit but these issues might not arise. Do what you do best… design and build cars and trucks!

  3. Mark B

    Until basic recharging issues are not issues anymore…maybe a universal, reliable system…similar to current fueling stations is in place, this will be one of several negatives except for the most diehard of converts.

  4. William Kircher

    Michigan has a significant issue with their dcfc ccs chargers. One can not drive across Michigan in an ccs Ev 4 months a year. Four month old ccs Charge Point cargers (all four) at the Casino in Mackinaw City do not work. It is 174 miles one way from Indian River ccs chargers to the single ccs charger at mejeir in Escanba. Too great of a distance where ev lose 40% range in winter. The other dcfc ccs charger in the up of Michigan (Norway) has malfunctioned for 9 months with no end in sight. All most all of the Michigan granted Ev chargers installed in the last two months are of the poky 50 and 62.5kW version. Infranstructure woes hinder ev growth that the Feds are pushing for.

  5. Larry Kramer

    Farleys just realizing this now?

    1. Kenny D

      Hey Larry. Farley is too Busy Racing the I C E Vehicles and Having Fun Spending the money his customers are Putting in his Pocket’s!!! He Does NOT CARE!!! And Neither Does Sleepy Joe!

  6. Kenny D

    Don’t Worry, Sleepy Joe Is On It!!!! He’ll Place a Windmill or two Next to Each Charging Station as a Back Up for Supplied Power. However, If the POS Charging Station(s) do NOT WORK, you are gonna have a MESS on you hands! This would simulate Pulling into a Fuel/Gas Station that has (NO GAS) in the Underground Tanks, Or Pumps that are Out of Service and ya can’t FILL UP. Something I rarely see, but it does happen. And theses CLOWNS are “Out Patrolling” In MAC E’S Looking for Units that “Aren’t” working properly??????? So JIMBO, Mr. FARLEY…… Get your S _ _ _ Together and Start Putting some ICE Units Out the Door so we can Put Some More $$$$$$ In your Pocket’s Whilst you Figure this MESS Out. Go watch the “State Of Charge” You Tube Channel and Watch Tom Show the Issues with these Car’s and Charging Stations. What a J O K E!!!

  7. Bill Howland

    If these are “American Engineered”, then it is shameful state of affairs….If working for 2 minutes gives 74% of the stations a “pass” then there would be many more that stop charging at 10 minutes – both Fast Chargers and also the horrid reliability of slower 6kw public chargers.

    ChargePoint charges a fortune to any Restaurant or other place of business having one or 2 of their horrid 6 kw dispensers… Mostly – the cord ends are broke – or else the access card won’t work – or else the unit is constantly rebooting itself – all this for a glorified light switch – where the ‘free’ ones should require no access card at all.

    But I agree with others that the nationwide situation seems to be somewhat of a joke..

    A typical Gasoline station has much more complex access and safety requirements by necessity – yet 99% of the time – everything works just fine. This makes electric dispensers ever more deserving of Knee-Slapping Laughter.


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